Travel insurance for assurance

Getting a travel insurance policy before an international trip is more of a necessity than an option now and it is the responsibility of travel consultants to inform their clients about the benefits of getting one

M. RAVICHANDRAN

Checking the best options for flights, visa applications, hotels, and sightseeing tours to ensure your client’s holiday is enjoyable isn’t enough. If you have not factored travel insurance on that checklist, you might want to add it now. If your clients still believe that their domestic mediclaim policy covers them outside India, they are wrong. In order to compare different plans, factors such as the cover options, premium amount, medical cover, and upper age limit should be given prior consideration. The premium for an insurance plan depends on the location, the travel period, age of the traveler and the level of coverage chosen. Know what is covered Many insurance companies also provide exclusive covers which offer specialised protection to customers. Baggage loss and baggage delay are the most common problems encountered while flying, which travel insurance covers. However, one should note that coverage is offered only when it is in the custody of the common carrier, which in most cases is the airline.

One must keep in mind that it will cover only checked-in baggage and delay in receiving baggage outside Indian boundaries. This means that if there is a delay in receiving baggage in India, the policy won’t respond. Travel insurance policies also have features which cover inconvenience caused due to trip delay, trip cancellation, missed connections and loss of passport. The possibility of personal liability is also covered which may lead to litigation in the foreign country.

Insurance companies also provide cover if the unattended house in India is burgled, while the policyholder is abroad. This is covered under the ‘Home Burglary’ benefit. Always remember to recommend a policy from a respected insurance brand which has international presence and a strong track record. One should also take into account the claim settlement record of the insurer. So if you want your clients to have a carefree, enjoyable and memorable trip abroad, ensure they fit travel insurance in their plan.
Did you know? If travellers are in the age bracket of 6 months to 70 years, they are eligible to purchase travel insurance. People above 70 years can still purchase travel insurance but would have limited cover. The duration of travel insurance policies are up to a maximum of 180 days per trip. Premium is determined by the amount of Medical Expenses Sum Insured and it varies from $50,000 to $100,000. Pre-existing ailments are normally excluded in travel insurance and the premium is calculated basis country of travel, age group and trip band. Further, both outpatient and inpatient treatments are covered under travel insurance whilst the Insured is abroad. Insured may apply for reimbursement of expenses when they return to India in case of outpatient claims.

Students can avail of a specialised cover which is in compliance with institutes abroad and it can be opted for a period of one year. A student cover also includes mental and nervous disorders, rehabilitation for drug and alcoholic addiction, sponsor protection, study interruption and compassionate visit. Students would do well to check whether the policy they intend to buy is recognised by their institute.

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